Flights to France cancelled due to Europe-wide protest

Air-traffic controllers across Europe staged a day of protest against the EU plan to unify the European airspace yesterday (Wednesday).

There were limited disruptions to Austrian air traffic – the only flights affected were those to and from France.

Officials at Vienna-Schwechat’s international airport said that ten links to Paris, Nice and Lyon (France) were affected yesterday. Austrian airlines cancelled six flights and Air France and Niki also had to cancel two flights each.

There were a series of meetings at the Austrian air traffic control authority, Austro Control, but these had no repercussions on the plane traffic.

There were meetings at seven different locations to allow all members of staff to participate in the debate.

Trade unions in France started a strike action as early as Tuesday. The action is thought to last until today (Thursday).

Lufthansa has cancelled at least 170 flights to and from France, including today (Thursday). Free cancellation and booking transfers are possible with the German airline. Austria Airlines (AUA) has also advised passengers to check the status of their flight on the AUA-website before travelling to the airport.

There were 1,800 flights cancelled in France on Tuesday alone, but the air traffic control authority (DGAC) said that the situation was generally very calm. There airlines are said to have obtained the reversal of the proposal.

The air traffic controllers’ trade union called for the protest again the “Single European Sky” project of the European Union. They fear that the unification of the European airspace might put jobs, collective agreements and social standards at risk.